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Full text of "Linguistic Survey Of India Vol Ii Mon Khmer Siamese Chinese Families"

FAMILY.
we-', <n a «tcn^ follows the order of thought of tiie speaker, so that it follows that the
M'^'S think in an order of ideas different from that of the Khassis and the Mans.
Own- to tiie existence of these differences we should not be justified in assuming a
oommou oTicit- fol' fte -Won-Khmft languages on the one hand, and for the Munda,
Kanoowiy, rod Malacca languages, on the other, We may, however, safely assume that
thr*e is 'it. tlio bottom of all these tongues1 a common substratum, over which there have
cettlcrl layers of A,lie speeches of other peoples, differing m different localities Neverlhc-
Je«, tim &nbbtratum was firmly enough established to prevent its being entirely bidden
by fiiera, and frequent, undeniable, traces of it are still discernible in languages spoken
ia widely distant tracts of Nearer and Further India.
Of what language this original substratum consisted, we are not yet in a position to
gay. Whatever it was, it covered a wide area, larger than the area covered by many
families of languages in India at the present day- Languages with this common substra-
tum are now spoken not only in the modern Province of Assam, in Burma, Siam,
Cambodia and Anam, but also over the whole of Central India as far west as the Berars,
It is a far cry from Cochin China to Mmar, and yet, even at the present clay, the coin-
cidences between the language of the Korkus of the latter District and the Anamese of
Cochin China are strikingly obvious to any student of language who turns his attention
to them. Still further food for reflection is given by the undoubted fact that, on the
other sides the Miinda languages show clear traces of connexion with the speeches of the
aborigines of Australia.
This ancient substratum may have been the parent of the present Munda languages,
or it may have been the parent of the present Mon-Khmer languages.   It cannot have
been the parent of both, but it is possible that it was the parent of neither,   Logan,
writing in the early fifties, believed that it is the Mon-Khmer family of which it was the
parent, and that the speakers were a mixture of two distinct races, i.e., that Eastern
Tibetans, or Western Chinese, came across the Himalaya, and mingled with the Australo-
Dravidians of India proper, who are now looked upon as the aborigines of India,   Porbes,
in his Comparative Grammar, avoids the question, and contents himself with proving,
what is now not a matter of doubt, that the Munda and Mon-Khmer families had no
common parentage,   Kuhn is more cautious than Logan.   He proves the existence of the
common substratum, but does not venture to state to what family of languages it belonged.
Thomson does not deal with the question directly, but it may be gathered from the paper
quoted below that his opinion is that most probably the substratum is a Munda one, and
that a population akin to the Indian Munda races originally extended as far east as
Further India.   This was before the beginnings of those invasions from the north which
resulted, first, in the Mon-Khmer, and, afterwards, in the Tibeto-Burman and Tai settle-
ments in that region,
AUTHORITIES-,
The following writings deal with the general question of the Mon-Khmer races and
languages:—
r, J.R-/n»«n«(rf papers on the mno%, of *7,e Indo^Pacijlc Islands, winch appeared in the
,11LI       MiPday°> tt*y a11 1* studied ™th advantage, though much has
», Oangetic and Dravirian Languages, on pp. 186 and ff. of Vol. vii (1853).
'---------------------,-------------
1 So Kuhn in ftc Bettrdge quoted below.